About Us

Katie Cookson Central Connects Magazine

Meet the founder of Central Connects Magazine.

Katie Cookson

The journey for the magazine and my family move to Portugal started back in June 2022.

Having just completed my three-year degree in Professional and Creative Writing and knowing that Portugal was somewhere that I had wanted to move to. On the 3rd June, we set off on our scouting journey. Myself, Primrose (aged 7) and Frederick (aged 4) started our adventure in the Algarve. We enjoyed rest and relaxation time, as I knew that the Algarve was not the place for us. We then travelled via buses and trains to the beautiful city of Sintra which is filled with colourful buildings, brimming with history, and roads that were designed for horse and carriages. It is somewhere I would recommend visiting and will write an article about for the magazine. It was, however, not the place for us. So, onwards we travelled to Aveiro or as the Portuguese refer to it as “Little Venice” and famous for its gondolas that travel through the main city. We stopped in a small beach hut, with all the comfort and facilities that we needed. Visiting the local fish market on a daily basis and spending some quality family time on the beach. Again, another wonderful place to holiday but not to live. After this visit, we travelled further north and visited Oliveira Do Hospital. As I sat on the bus and entered the mountains, marvelling at the beautiful green scenery, the butterflies in my stomach started to fly.

“Was this the place for us?”

Within five days we had found somewhere to live and schooling for the children. It would seem that the universe was now helping us to achieve our new home.

Now, with somewhere to live and schooling sorted, it was time to go back to the UK and start packing! But, what was I going to do for work and how could I use my skills as a writer. We travelled back to the Algarve, and stayed with my friend. It was there that I noticed the East Algarve Magazine. Immediately my business brain kicked into action and I started to research our new area, in Central Portugal. There was nothing like the magazine there and as the foreign population was now over 19,000 I guessed it needed this type of connection in the area. My friend set up a meeting with Richard, the owner of the East Algarve Magazine. We had a wonderful meeting and agreed that this was a project that we both could be involved with. Myself as the owner and editor with Richard as the publisher. And that was it.

On July 2nd we travelled back to the UK with a new home, schools and business all ready for us on our return.

August was a month of settling (although in hindsight I would recommend several months for this process). Then, at the beginning of September we went to work on the new Central Connects Magazine.

This month’s magazine process has given us a lot to learn. From choosing the right photo for the front cover, proofreading articles and getting the advertising to the perfect quality.

The front cover was changed many times until we were sent the flower opening by Francisco Costa, a local Portuguese photographer. The flower is in the same phase as Central Connects magazine and it was agreed that it was speaking volumes in how we see the magazine. “Growing and getting ready to bloom ”. This was not the only decision we had to make and I have to thank both sub editors, Elaine Godley and Verona Schroder, who’s collaboration in proofreading and producing articles have been a life saver in getting this first edition out. With all the articles, adverts and photos it was then the turn of Publisher, Richard Bassett, to make the magazine come to life, something that until now, I have taken for granted. Just how much time and effort goes into producing a final magazine has astounded me.

So, with all the hard work done by this fabulous team. It’s time to see the magazine bloom.

The magazine is free and with an aim to connect the foreign community with locals through sharing articles about local and foreign businesses, places to visit, events and any other matters of local interest. There will be an online version and a hardcopy reaching over 2000 thousand readers, in just the first edition. If you would like to be considered to feature in Central Connects please contact us.